View synonyms for pessimistic


[ pes-uh-mis-tik ]


  1. pertaining to or characterized by pessimism or the tendency to expect only bad outcomes; gloomy; joyless; unhopeful:

    His pessimistic outlook kept him from applying for jobs for which he was perfectly qualified.

    Synonyms: hopeless, despairing

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Other Words From

  • pessi·misti·cal·ly adverb
  • nonpes·si·mistic adjective
  • nonpes·si·misti·cal·ly adverb
  • over·pessi·mistic adjective
  • over·pessi·misti·cal·ly adverb
  • unpes·si·mistic adjective
  • unpes·si·misti·cal·ly adverb
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Word History and Origins

Origin of pessimistic1

First recorded in 1865–70; pessimist + -ic
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Synonym Study

See cynical.
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Example Sentences

Not all of the economists in the survey were as pessimistic as Sinclair.

For companies to fall in this lowest tier means that investors are pessimistic about their future sales growth and profitability.

From Fortune

Corelogic, the financial data service, has made a baseline forecast that some three million homeowners will fall behind on their mortgage payments—and their pessimistic forecast predicts more than 12 million delinquent borrowers.

From Quartz

Assuming the most pessimistic scenario — that life requires stars to have at least as much metal as the sun — eliminates about two-thirds of the galaxy’s stars.

This message will resonate with Americans who are feeling pessimistic due to everything that has unfolded in 2020.

Are you more pessimistic about the overall public education crisis given this current environment?

“I fall very much on the pessimistic spectrum, in the sense that I get very confused about it,” she says.

But otherwise he was far more pessimistic about the rest of the Deep South.

It satirizes and parodies the romanticised, pessimistic accounts of rural life by writers like Thomas Hardy and Mary Webb.

But at the time I was so pessimistic that the notion of staying and fighting just seemed like an empty gesture.

My brother recovered his old spirit and refused to be discouraged by my pessimistic view of his expedition.

Raoul, with pessimistic foreboding, was convinced that there were only girls next door.

Then I received a pessimistic letter from Aunt H—— telling me that lots of wounded were expected and that the war would not cease.

But in his most dangerous crisis he had never been restless, apprehensive, pessimistic, as he was at this moment.

He was disposed to a critical and sometimes pessimistic examination of his own feelings and of other people's actions.